Toyota and its luxury brand Lexus have suspended production of four Australian-bound models in Japan, following the company’s admission to cheating during engine certification testing.
As reported by The Japan News, six production lines across four of Toyota’s Japanese factories have been placed on hold as the automotive giant investigates how three of its turbo-diesel engines were tested using different software to those sold in showrooms.
The production pause affects the Toyota LandCruiser 300 Series and its Lexus LX twin – both powered by the F33A-FTV 3.3-litre V6 turbo-diesel engine – plus the LandCruiser 70 Series and HiAce van, which are fitted with a 2.8-litre four-cylinder turbo-diesel engine, known as the 1GD-FTV.
Earlier this week, Toyota announced the findings of an internal investigation, which found “potential irregularities of certification regulations” of the three turbo-diesel engines, including the 2GD-FTV.
Toyota said the engine control units (ECUs) used for certification during horsepower output testing had different software to those found in customer-delivered vehicles – a near-admission of cheating the tests.
“[The] software that differed from that used for mass production so that results could measure to make values appear smoother with less variation,” Toyota said in a media statement.
The Toyota Industries Corporation (TICO) – which manufactures the engines on behalf of the Toyota Motor Corporation – subsequently suspended shipments of the affected engines and vehicles equipped with them.
Japanese government officials later raided a Toyota transmission factory in the hours after the company’s admission of engine test cheating, though it’s not yet known what they discovered at the facility.
Toyota Australia is yet to announce what effect the suspension of exports and production of the affected models will have on local supply.